Off the Shelf: Jennifer L. Geddes

Jennifer L. Geddes, research associate professor of religious studies at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture at the University of Virginia; John K. Roth of Claremont McKenna College; and Jules Simon, University of Texas at El Paso, "The Double Binds of Ethics after the Holocaust." Palgrave Macmillan.

June 3, 2009 — "The Double Binds of Ethics after the Holocaust" sheds new light on the ethical repercussions of the Nazi genocide against the Jews.

Contributors focus on two key dilemmas: First, that the Holocaust did immense harm to ethics by undermining confidence in beliefs about the fundamental status of ethical values, including human rights. Second, the Holocaust and subsequent genocides have destroyed confidence that human beings will fulfill their moral obligations better "next time."

Responding to these double binds, the authors explore what can be done in ethical theory and practice to respond effectively to the impact of the Holocaust and genocide. Its chapters not only assess the weakness of ethics in standing firmly and effectively against human-made destruction, but also indicate steps of salvage and retrieval that need to be taken if ethics is to be a significant presence in a world still besieged by genocide and atrocity.